CHICAGO (CBS) — As schools across Illinois switch over to e-learning, parents and students alike are wondering how the change might affect grade point averages and college admissions.
CBS 2’s Tim McNicholas on Friday broke down what is different, and why high schools and colleges are being flexible right now.
High school students won’t be throwing open their lockers and chucking their backpacks anytime soon. But don’t take your foot off the gas.
“Students should continue to do their best,” said Amy Simon.
Simon runs a consulting business in the northern suburbs to help kids land at their dream college.
She said the Chicago Public Schools and many other districts are switching to a system where, for now, grades can only help students.
“If a student had a B going into this, then they can’t get lower than a B,” Simon said. “They might have an opportunity to move it up to a B plus or an A minus by continuing to do the remote learning.”
Schools do not want to fail students right now. But for many districts, students who don’t do their e-learning work can get a grade of incomplete, which they’d have to make up for down the road.
“If you are trying and demonstrating that you’re trying, I think the school districts are going to work with you,” she said.
The SAT and ACT tests scheduled for this month have been canceled, but the tests might be rescheduled at a safer time.
If students for some reason can’t take those tests at all because of the COVID-19 outbreak, some colleges might be willing to focus more on grades.
“There are some schools that have announced they are going test optional for this upcoming class, where they don’t have to submit test scores,” Simon said.
As for this year’s Advanced Placement, or AP tests, the plan for now is for students to take a 45-minute test for each course online from home.
It will be free-response or essay questions, and high grades are still expected to count toward college credits.
The Chicago Public Schools will also have counselors available in the weeks ahead to work with students, including help for those trying to get into colleges. And if you’re upset that you can’t visit your top college choices, some are offering virtual tours online.